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Old 03-10-2011
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old versus new, opinions?

We are looking for a larger boat that will not break the bank = <10k and have a few that intrigue me due to what you get for the money.
I would like honest opinions as to the pros and cons of older boats when compared to older regarding build quality,sailing characteristics,possible transportation ease.
Our list of boats require a draft of 4'6 or less with an emphasis on less.
would prefer a wheel but have no problems staying with a tiller.
Mostly used for gunkholing with occasional regatta if a wild hare arises.
I have an interest in an Ericson 29t which I believe may have a crack in the keel which makes me a little shy, I can handle the work - thats "if" I really want to spend my summer working rather than sailing.
I also found a 77 C&C 26 with a wheel and diesel that looks to be in good shape.
recently I found a newer Catalina 27 that also has a wheel and diesel. Are the Catalinas really built thin like the BOATUS review states?
I can get my hands on a different 77 C&C 26 with a vire engine and tiller sitting on a nice trailer for much less, unfortunately I found that parts for that engine are almost extinct.
In my opinion, the older boats were built stonger, am I crazy?
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Old 03-10-2011
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That 'older boats are stronger' is mostly a misconception. Perhaps heavier but not necessarily stronger.

Either of the boats you mention would be fine, I'd agree with your preference to avoid the Vire engine. Others that might fit your budget would include the Ranger 28/29 (with the 29 the cruisier). A member here recently picked up a Newport 30, a reasonable coastal boat with some room, the Newport 28 is another candidate. Older C&C 27s are probably a nicer boat than the 26, but maybe no roomier.

Nowadays if you're willing to go into the '70s then 10K can get you a fair amount of boat. The key is to find a good one and do all the due diligence to avoid buying someone else's problem.
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Old 03-11-2011
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At less than 10k smaller is your friend as everything on a 29' cost twice as much as a 25' and at 26' the insurance survey becomes much more rigorous
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Old 03-11-2011
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Look for a nice old Pearson - they are very good boats, built well and sail great.

Whatever you buy, at the under $10K mark, you likely should be prepared to dump some money into it during your first year of ownership to take care of deferred maintenance items left by the prior owner(s).

I bought a 1968 Pearson Wanderer last August and love it. But earlier in its life, it had been neglected. The guy I bought it from did a bunch of work to correct a lot of that neglect, but left plenty of project for me to complete - which is what put it in my price range. I'm right now dumping a few thousand bucks into whole bunch of work, but it's all stuff I shouldn't ever have to do again, unless I own the boat for 30 years (unlikely).

Just recently I saw a nice mid-1960s Tartan 27 for sale at under $10K - I've heard very good things about those as well.

Another note: don't be afraid of an Atomic 4 gasoline engine - it's what I have in my Pearson. They're bulldogs and if reasonably taken care of (and even if not so well taken care of), they run forever. They're dirt simple engines, easy to repair and keep running and there's plenty of parts and support available for them.

Don't be afraid of a 1960s boat - I think that in many ways, some of them arguable are better than some of the 1970s and `80s boats. I'm not saying across the board as a general truism, but there's no doubt that certain of the 1960s boats are better than certain of the later ones. As with any boat, have a good survey done. Don't get your heart set on one right away - there are millions of used boats out there - it's a used boat buyer's market right now.
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Old 03-11-2011
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Ohhhhh, what I could do with a $10K budget.

Where are you located?

I think either a Catalina 27 or C&C 26 with a wheel is going to be an Edison (or other) wheel conversion- the parts may be good, the execution often not so much. Keep looking. I like orphan boats (manufacturers who have gone Tango Uniform) but don't like orphan engines. Look for the best combination of parts you can afford- in fact look for boats advertised 20% higher than your budget then utter the word "cash" frequently while "cash" negotiating "cash" from a "cash" starting point "cash" 40% below the "cash" asking price "cash". Then point-blank tell the seller "Did I mention I am paying cash?" while fanning a stack of Benjamins.
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Old 04-10-2011
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Looked at a few C&C 27's yesterday, they appear to be a nice boat. Also found an Ericson 29 that could use a little soft deck repair but otherwise is a gorgeous boat.
I like the roominess of the Ericson 29, it drafts the same as the C&C 27 MARK II. 4'3"
Atomic 4's in all of the boats in my price range.
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Old 04-10-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ptsbug View Post
Atomic 4's in all of the boats in my price range.
Not the end of the world... but try to get a FWC version if possible - much less chance of corrosion damage and heating issues.
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1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"

".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)
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